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Emerging networks to foster agroecology in tropical horticulture
- Bon, H. de, Diarra, K., Fernandes, P., Huat, J., Marnotte, P., Ratnadass, A., Renou, A., Vayssières, J.F.
- Acta horticulturae 2013 no.1007 pp. 451-457
- Cucurbitaceae, Helicoverpa armigera, Plutella xylostella, adenosine triphosphate, agroecology, biodiversity, cabbage, cotton, cropping systems, developing countries, education programs, educational research, fruit flies, higher education, insect traps, islands, mangoes, models, okra, pest control, pesticide use reduction, research institutions, sanitation, savannas, soil-borne diseases, tomatoes, tropical and subtropical horticulture, tropics, universities, vegetable growing, weeds, Caribbean, Cuba, France, French West Indies, Haiti, Indian Ocean, Sub-Saharan Africa
- Reduction of pesticide use is one of the main objectives in tropical fruit and vegetable production. To meet this objective, CIRAD proposed solutions based on the agroecological approach. The hypothesis is that increasing biodiversity in the agro-horticultural system will allow reduction of pesticide use by favoring ecological regulation mechanisms. To organize the research, CIRAD has set up different networks in the tropics. The first initiative, ATP OMEGA 3, has developed activities on okra in Africa, tomato in the Caribbean, and cucurbits in the Indian Ocean, focused on insect trap cropping control and soil borne disease service plant-based sanitation. In 2009, an initiative emerged from West African institutions and universities in 5 countries. This network, DIVECOSYS, aims to develop research and education programs in Sub-Saharan Africa and France on bio-aggressor managements on cropping systems from savanna area. Fruit flies on mango, Plutella xylostella on cabbage, weeds in rice-vegetables systems and Helicoverpa armigera on cotton are the biological models studied in view of pest control. In 2009, DEVAG, a regional project funded by European Commission, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France with institutions from Cuba, Haiti and French West Indies has begun with the general objective to improve the agroecological horticultural systems in the cases of tropical islands. In 2011, the ECOHORT project was launched. This platform-program proposes innovative horticultural systems based on ecological intensification. It brings together universities and research institutions from Europe and developing countries to promote the system approach in designing ecologically intensified systems in higher education and research. Some results from these networks are presented.